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DDN: Nonprofit organization helps women start companies

Excerpt from the Dayton Daily News

It was born in her basement during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since then, Aviatra-Dayton, a nonprofit organization that supports women in business, has served more than 200 entrepreneurs since its inception, ranging from those who sell women’s apparel online and provide staffing to those offering music therapy to youths.

“Even though we launched at the onset of the pandemic, I believed there would be existing women business owners who would need assistance with learning how they could do business during the global pandemic, and we could help them figure out how to pivot,” said Pamela Cone, a Wright State University communication alumna and director of Aviatra-Dayton.

Aviatra has an office at The Hub, a space with resources for entrepreneurs, inventors, students and others to create and support new businesses. The Hub is located in downtown Dayton’s historic Arcade, a sprawling complex of five connected buildings crowned by an ornate rotunda.

Cone became director of the nonprofit in March 2020 with the help of a $150,000 donation from her former employer and Aviatra alum, Robin Gentry McGee. McGee was recently honored by Dayton Mayor and Wright State graduate Nan Whaley with a proclamation for her contribution and bringing the resource to Dayton.